Surgical procedures under anaesthesia - pork
Surgical procedures, such as castration, are painful and stressing for piglets. The administration of anaesthesia before surgical procedures helps to reduce an animal's suffering in connection with the procedure. Contracting authorities that set criteria for the use of anaesthesia during surgical procedures contribute to ensuring that these procedures are carried out with less pain for the animals.
- Technical specification
Pork must be derived from animals that have been anaesthetised during any and all surgical procedures. If piglets are castrated surgically, they must be anaesthetised for the procedure.
Upon request the supplier shall be ready to present, for example, one of the following:
- Certification that meets the requirement, such as IP gris grundcertifiering [IP Pig base level certification], or other certification showing that the requirement is met.
- Details of country of origin of pork ingredients and reference to applicable law in cases where national legislation establishes that the requirement is met, e.g. Origin: Sweden, chapter 4, section 2 of the Animal Welfare Act (2018:1192) and chapter 5, section 6 of SJVFS (2019:25).
Monitoring of compliance during the contract period can for example be done through sampling at one or several occasions of one or several products for which the criterion applies. The supplier can prove that the product(s) meet the requirement through, e.g,:
- Certification according to IP gris grundcertifiering [IP Pig base level certification], or other certification showing that the requirement is met.
- Labelling the country of origin of pork ingredients, e.g., Origin: Sweden 'Från Sverige' [From Sweden] 'Kött från Sverige' [Meat from Sweden], , with written documentation showing that the requirement has been met, e.g., an Importer's Declaration along with a self-assessment in accordance with Miljöhusesyn, audit records or veterinary records.
- Other written documentation showing that the requirement is met.
Contracting authorities may, in specific cases and when motivated, state in the contract terms that documentation is to be verified or reviewed by an independent third party. What does this mean? (only in Swedish)
Subject matter of contract
Products of pork with environmental and animal protection criteria
Information about the criterion
An alternative to surgical castration is vaccination against boar taint, so-called immunocastration. Vaccination against boar taint means that the pig is not castrated trough a surgical procedure.
The criteria may limit market avaliability for individual products.
Organic production also ensures that surgical procedures on pigs are done under anaesthesia.
One reason for castrating boars is to avoid the so-called boar taint, an unpleasant taste and smell in meat from some uncastrated male pigs. Another reason for castration is to reduce the occurrence of aggressive and sexual behaviour in male pigs. Surgical castration along with anaesthesia causes less suffering for the pigs than the practise of performing castration without anaesthesia, the prevalence of which is considered to be an animal welfare problem.1
The Pig Directive2 allows piglets to be castrated without the use of anaesthesia if the procedure is performed within the first seven days of the animal's life. In Sweden, since 2016, piglets must be anaesthetised before castration regardless of age, according to chapter 4, section 2 of the Animal Welfare Act (2018:1192) and chapter 5, section 2, of D8 L41, SJVFS (2019:25). Pigs may, however, be castrated without a veterinarian or other animal health personnel being present, provided that the castration is performed before the animal has reached the age of seven days, according to chapter 4, section 1 of the Animal Welfare Protection Ordinance (2019:66).
The version date indicates when the sustainability criterion was created or last updated. Last reviewed dated tells when we last checked that the sustainability criterion still is relevant.
- Current ID
- Version date
2020-03-25: Original version